Abilene, TX EDACS

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tknjk

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I am thinking about getting a digital scanner, so I can listen to the Abilene Police Department. I used to listen to them when they were analog. My question is this. I know they use EDACS Digital. How do I find out if their signal is encrypted? If it's encrypted I don't have a reason for buying a digital scanner. Thanks.
 

nd5y

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Abilene's EDACS trunked system is capable of analog and ProVoice digital talkgroups.

Any recent trunking scanner can receive EDACS analog talkgroups. No scanner can receive ProVoice. I don't know if the digital talkgroups are encrypted or not. The database only shows digital but it may not be accurate.

If you have a discriminator tapped scanner or SDR you can track the system using Unitrunker and listen to unecrypted ProVoice with DSD. See Digital Speech Decoder (software package) - The RadioReference Wiki and EDACS Provoice - The RadioReference Wiki
 

hiegtx

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I am thinking about getting a digital scanner, so I can listen to the Abilene Police Department. I used to listen to them when they were analog. My question is this. I know they use EDACS Digital. How do I find out if their signal is encrypted? If it's encrypted I don't have a reason for buying a digital scanner. Thanks.
Welcome to RadioReference.

Actually, Abilene is using ProVoice on their system. It is digital (that's the talkgroups labeled with a "D" in the Mode column), but it's a format no scanner can decode directly. ProVoice can be monitored by using a scanner with a discriminator tap to feed a signal to a PC running a software program, DSD, among others. There is a forum for that discussion. I have not experimented with it as yet, though I have considered trying this for a couple of Mototrbo systems in my area.

I've also heard that Abilene was considering upgrading their radio system, possibly to P25, which is a much more common form of digital. The EDACS systems, in general, are considered "end of life", and are no longer supported by the manufacturer. The question is, though, if Abilene moves to P25, will it be Phase I? That is easily monitorable by a large number of digital trunk trackers. Or, Phase II, which would require one of a much smaller pool of models. The other question is, if and when they change, will they elect to encrypt the P25 (digital) channels, no matter which format is used. If that is the case, then you still ould be unable to track the system talkgroups where encryption is in use.

Of course, a number of agencies in your area are already using P25 (digital) communications on conventional, non-trunked, channels. Also see this thread.

(Tom, ND5y, typed a little quicker)
 

tj20

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VEEERY interesting! End of life considering the system is very new lol. Did they actually realize the f'd up and bought some old technology. They were soooooo proud of their new system a few years ago showing it off to the media. Look at our new digital system!!!!! Dollars to donuts they will encrypt the police channels, if they go to a p25 system, since they have enjoyed not being where you could listen in (very easily).
 
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nd5y

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Their system may be relatively new but EDACS technology isn't.
Harris quit selling EDACS systems in 2011 and will end all support for EDACS in 2017.
 

tj20

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Exactly. Abilene's system went operational around 2006/07. Several years later the vender comes back and says, "uh yea we are not longer going to support your system, but thanks for the millions of dollars". There is one born every minute, and sometimes it's a whole city
 

fasteddy64

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Abilene, TX
I have recently been re-assigned as the radio specialist for the Abilene Fire Department.

I can confirm that consultants from RCC will be here this month to look at things and make some recommendations.

Yes our system uses old technology, but it works, it works well and we continue to get excellent support from the vendor we purchased from. I doubt it will be scrapped any time soon.

I am happy to answer questions about or stuff, preferably by private message or email maikranze@gmail.com
 
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